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Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Regency London by Susanna Ives + Giveaway

Explore This! Regency London by Susanna Ives + Giveaway

As you can see we, the Book Lovers, are still on ‘vacations’. Today’s Author takeover will be performed by Author Susanna Ives, who will take us on a tour to Regency London! If you haven’t read Rakes & Radishes yet, I hope this post will be enough of a tease to win you over *g*. Stay tuned and you can be entered to win a copy of Rakes & Radishes!

Thank you Book Lovers Inc. for letting me participate in your Blogoversary
A few months ago, Caroline wrote me with the idea of writing a blog post about London as seen through the eyes of my heroine, Henrietta, in Rakes and Radishes. However, I’ve been so immersed in a Victorian project, that I’m afraid I’ve lost Henrietta’s voice.

So, I’ve combed the pages …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Siena, Italy

Explore This! Siena, Italy

This week, we travel to Siena, Italy, site of much of the action in Anne Fortier’s novel, Juliet. With a modern day woman tracking one of her ancestors back to Siena and possibly the source of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, it is sure to bring up romantic images of ancient Italian cities: cobbled roads, lush greenery, palazzos, quaint shopping and more. Here to reinforce these images are my pics (k, not really mine…I only wish…but ones I’ve found). Enjoy the tour!

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Salem, Massachusetts

Explore This! Salem, Massachusetts

I’ve had the pleasure of reading a couple of Nathaniel Hawthorne short stories this year through two of my university courses, The Birthmark and most recently, Young Goodman Brown. This got me thinking about Salem, Massachusetts…and of course what it is most famous for.

What I didn’t know before was that Nathaniel Hawthorne had ancestors that were involved in the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. Hawthorne was born in Salem, so his family must have resided in the town for several generations. For more information on the Witch Trials (I found this an interesting account of what happened and why) click here. There was a lot of misunderstandings that got completely out of hand, and were fueled by young girls and family resentments.

Salem, MA is a lovely, old town with lots of history but sadly has this bad reputation, …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Paris, France

Explore This! Paris, France

A while back, we took a look at Paris but from a slightly different view. Today, we’re going all out and doing the geeky tourist must visit list. My inspiration comes from Lindsey Kelk’s I Heart Paris. Kelk’s heroine in the novel, Angela, gets to experience Paris on an open air double decker bus. So lets put on our sundresses and pretend it’s summer in Paris. Off we go…

The Parisienne counterpart to the American icon…..
of course, the Statue of Liberty was a gift from the French

The Seine

I love Gargoyles!

The Eiffel Tower…I know, I know, I probably didn’t even need to caption this one 🙂

The Arc de …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Portland, Maine

Explore This! Portland, Maine

I’ve just finished reading Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick and wanted to feature the town in her novel: Coldwater, Maine. It turns out that this is a fictional town. It would have been nice to feature the boardwalks, beaches and amusements parks as described by Becca but no such luck. So we move on to the next closest, real town that is mentioned throughout: Portland, Maine.

It’s often been a thought of mine to hit the road, travelling down through the Canadian East Coast, then hopping the board and trekking down the coastline of the States. A stop in Maine would be a must for me to get that authentic Maine lobster dinner. Yum!

I’m also a sucker for lighthouses, so you’ll find a few in our travels this week. The funny thing is that in doing my research, I found the picture showing the crash of the Annie Maguire, as commemorated on …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Versailles, The Tuileries and Vaux-le-Vicomte

Explore This! Versailles, The Tuileries and Vaux-le-Vicomte

This week, I’ve drawn inspiration for our destination from Lila DiPasqua. Her latest novel, The Princess in His Bed, releases on November 2, 2010, so I thought it fitting to travel her way. Which way is that? Well, France, of course. I haven’t read DiPasqua yet myself but seeing the ratings for her books has convinced me to give them a try. With Princes and castles and romance (did I mention “Fiery” romance?), how can you go wrong?!

So, grab your walking shoes and let’s head to Versailles Palace, The Tuileries and Vaux Le Vicomte…or should I say: Allons-y!!

Our first stop is the Palace of Versailles.

Versailles at night…so pretty!

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Explore This! Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

This week, we travel back to the United States to visit Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Harrisburg is the capital city of the state and lies on the banks of the Susquehanna River. Other claims to fame for the city include it playing large roles in the American Civil War and the Industrial Revolution. It is also only 10 miles away from Hershey, Pennsylvania, home of the chocolate makers…..yum!

How does it relate to books? Well, it’s a frequent haunt for the characters in Megan Hart’s novels, which I’m sure alot of you are aware of. I wasn’t, until The Geeky Lover suggested it. Now, I’ve started reading Megan Hart’s Dirty in an attempt to get some background information 😉 I will admit being disappointed to discover that The Slaughtered Lamb is not an actual pub in Harrisburg, though I found one in NYC.

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Castles of Wales and England

Explore This! Castles of Wales and England

I dislike being redundant, but all of the other books I’ve read lately gave me no inspiration for this post, so it seems we remain in Great Britain for this weeks post. But I am heading in a different direction, so hopefully you enjoy 🙂

I have just finished reading The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory, a master of historical fiction. In her most recent novel, we follow the life of Lady Margaret Beaufort/Tudor/Stafford/Stanley, which may not mean anything to those of you not big on historical fiction, but she may be better known to you as Henry VII’s mother and Henry VIII’s grandmother. How’s that for lineage?

I’ve included here what I’m sure is a small portion of castles to be found within Wales, where Lady Margaret lived for a short time during her marriage to Edmund Tudor …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Avebury, England (with a pinch of London)

Explore This! Avebury, England (with a pinch of London)

This week, I’m whisking you all off to Avebury, which looks very much like it’s in the heart of farming country in England. It is, in fact, only 32 kilometres away from the more famous stone circle, Stonehenge, though Avebury appears to be older (I got this information from the Wiki entry that I’ve linked below). What I also discovered while looking into Avebury is that there are solstice festivals celebrated there and it seems to still have ties to the old philosophies of witchcraft or pagan religions. For me, this is very cool. I went a little bit geeky researcher on this one because Stonehenge has always been on the top of my “places to visit” list, since reading a Hardy Boys mystery that featured these standing stones. It’s my current read of The Guardian of the Gate by Michelle …

Post Thumbnail of Explore This! Grand Rapids and Holland, Michigan

Explore This! Grand Rapids and Holland, Michigan

This week’s tour takes us to Grand Rapids, Michigan, more specifically East Grand Rapids (I couldn’t find much of a distinction pictorially, but I’m sure that those who live there know the difference) and to Holland, Michigan. My inspiration comes from reading a cute YA book called I Now Pronounce You Someone Else by Erin McCahan. Here’s a little about the book:

Eighteen-year-old Bronwen Oliver has a secret: She’s really Phoebe, the lost daughter of the loving Lilywhite family. That’s the only way to explain her image-obsessed mother; a kind but distant stepfather; and a brother with a small personality complex. Bronwen knows she must have been switched at birth, and she can’t wait to get away from her “family” for good.

Then she meets Jared Sondervan. He’s sweet, funny, everything she wants — and he has the family Bronwen has always …

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